Meet Stellar Leads: Shane Kavanagh

Meet Shane Kavanagh. A Stellar General Manager with a background in editing TV shows

Shane is one of very few born and bred Aucklanders at Stellar. His contribution to Stellar’s high level of cultural diversity involves him having headed offshore for his early to mid-adult life.  He moved to London as a typical OE traveller, expecting to stay just a few years, but those years just kept expanding as he caught the travel bug. He became one of those ex-pats contributing to migration inflow by coming back with an English wife (and daughter).  Now Shane and his family are settled in Auckland, also have a son, forming a “Briwi” (British / Kiwi) family with split sporting allegiances.

Shane started in Stellar nearly 8 years ago and is still enjoying his job very much. Meet a Stellar General Manager with a very interesting (not only) career background.

From Suzi Cato to Discovery Channel

When Shane got to London, he tended to get media jobs because of his background in editing children’s TV shows featuring Suzi Cato. He had various temporary jobs including working in the marketing department at the Discovery Channel, working on radio broadcasts of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships for the BBC and then on some data work at Grenada Television.

Eventually, Shane started working in a City law firm as an analyst in the finance team, which is where he first got introduced to Business Intelligence. Later he worked in the Human Resources team and then left to undertake Finance and HR consulting. He ended up coming back to NZ for a banking project. He then did a rite of passage at Fonterra before finally joining Stellar, where he’s been ever since.

Academic record as varied as Shane’s career

Shane has a Bachelor of Science Degree as well as a Diploma in Film and Television.  In later life, he studied accountancy and sat accounting exams in Italy. “The three of them combined make a great combination, especially for a consultant. The research and analysis of science, the freedom of design – to jump outside the square and problem solve, and the rigour of reconciliation and testing that comes from accounting”, says Shane.

Shane had heard of Stellar through an old work colleague. He had described the Stellar people he met at Fonterra as “pretty good people” and he specifically called out now CEO John McDermott. “Today I really like that we have a great team, a variety of meaningful work with an amazing set of customers. Best of all is that our customers tend to treat us as if we were one of their own. That makes our work so much more rewarding”, adds Shane.

Data and Analytics in recent times have untaken an exciting change of momentum. The Stellar team gets asked to look at predictive and prescriptive analytics and cognitive services and opportunities to do more automated decision making. These are exciting prospects that can quickly create a competitive advantage for industries or service improvements in the public sectors. “Everyone is willing to pull together to get a great result for a customer. This is evident from the very new employees all the way to the founders of the company. I am lucky at Stellar to be surrounded by such fantastic Consultants who have such strong and varied backgrounds and the technical skills to deliver on the promise”, admits Shane.

An active relaxer

As a child all Shane did in his spare time was sport. He played high-level football, ran a lot of cross country and distance running but also, played virtually any major sport you could name at some time or another. However, he really isn’t a “snow bunny” always preferring the warmth to the cold.

“I need to be doing something to relax. That is usually something around the kitchen at night, or on weekends, playing basketball or football with the kids, cycling around the neighbourhood or heading to one of the beaches nearby for a swim”, says Shane. He also loves working on the design and renovations of his old weatherboard house as there is always something to improve on.

Shane says that the best thing about his role is getting plenty of opportunities to meet people who want help. If you are one of them don’t hesitate to get in touch! You could get some advice regarding any aspect of data and analytics, but also have a nice chat about a wide range of Shane’s interests and experience.


Analytics, Business Intelligence, Data, Stellar News, Stellar People, Technology



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